Showing posts from June, 2013

Jose Rizal & The Lost Indios Bravos

Happy Birthday, Jose Rizal! Where are the youth who will consecrate their budding years and enthusiasm to the welfare of their country?

Wrong call! Now I know why Jose Rizal failed in his call for the Filipino youth to come to the aid of their country - he was too much of a dreamer, too idealistic, too much out of touch of the reality of his times. And so are we! We are the Lost Indios Bravos.

I have 1 last copy of my limited-edition book indios bravos! with the subtitle, Jose Rizal as Messiah of the Redemption. I published it in December 2005, all 186 pages of it, trim size 8.5" x 11" (you are looking at the cover, cropped.) My book is relevant even today because Jose Rizal is the failed Messiah of the Redemption. Because a hero cannot redeem us; we have to redeem ourselves! And we have not, so we are The Lost Indios Bravos. If not The Last.

Benigno Simeon Cojuangco Aquino III, our President Noynoy, in announcing that he was running after all after Mar Roxas gave way to …

Sharks! Open letter to Pangasinan Governor Amado Espino

Gov, Did you know that our beloved Hundred Islands now has shark-infested waters? That is the handiwork of the gentlemen in this photo. Please investigate the matter of sharks roaming the waters of Hundred Islands, that inviting tourist spot in our beloved Pangasinan. I know the voters of Pangasinan love you because they just voted you into your 3rd term with another landslide victory; I also know you are very much concerned with the environment because you have courageously and successfully carried out the cleaning and dredging of the polluted bodies of water in the province and now I'm proud to say, as a native, that Pangasinan is clean and beautiful even as it grows in truth and in fact. (If you're reading this and you're not the Governor, just remember: Now is the time for all good men to come to the aid of their country!) I'm reading a piece of disquieting news that appears in one of the local community newspapers, the one named Northern Watch with the motto &q…

12 June 1898. Hating Spain, Loving The United States

MANILA: I'm not proud, but I'm happy. This is a retelling - and a retailing - of the Declaration of Independence of the Philippines on the 12th of June 1898. Are you proud that on that date, the Philippines declared independence from Spain and, at the same time and on the same paper and in the same paragraph, declared dependence on the United States of America? Here's the pertinent excerpt, from the English translation of Sulpicio Guevara (Wikisource): And having as witness to the rectitude of our intentions the Supreme Judge of the Universe, and under the protection of the Powerful and Humanitarian Nation, the United States of America, we do hereby proclaim and declare solemnly in the name and by authority of the people of these Philippine Islands,The 85 signatories invoked God as to the righteousness of their act, and appealed to the protection of the mighty and merciful United States of America. This is Church intruding on the State, right? I love that! This is the U…

Climate Change Scientist, Leader & Evangelist

We must look at Rex Victor Cruz under quite a different light, because even as he is an alumnus of UP Los Baños, he is currently Chancellor, and as such he is leading the University in the present and into the future. What happened to his Vision for the University as "One Goal, One Destiny, One University" after his assumption to the post of Chancellor on 01 November 2011? Where is the University now? What the Chancellor of the University has been doing should be of concern to all Alumni because his activities, his approaches, and his accomplishments determine the present and the future of not only the graduates but also that of Philippine agriculture. After all, much of the manpower of public and private institutions comes from the University of the Philippines Los Baños. This is a reality that has been ignored for the last 100 years by the University itself. Happily, Nestlé Philippines has just intimated to us the value of erudition in agriculture, by launching its Nesc…

Yup! How eUP can run past the alumbayad

MANILA: Speed thrills! Speed kills, if low. Modern metaphor. The image you see is that of an alumbayad, Ilocano for earthworm. The metaphor is perfect even if I'm talking here of the whole UP System and not just my alma mater, the College of Agriculture of UP Los Baños. I'm talking here of electronic speed, Internet, WiFi. As I write this, about an hour ago (it's 0500 hr Tuesday, 04 June 2013), for the first time I learned about eUP, the flagship program of UP President Alfredo E Pascual, and which has a dedicated website at I chanced upon eUP while googling for "Rex Victor Cruz" for more information about his UPLB Chancellorship, as I'm writing a profile of his for the book on UPLB Alumni that I had the grand idea of producing for Loyalty Day 2013. (If you visit my dedicated website Alumni in Villages,, you will now see CV stories of 54 Alumni, and counting. If you're ElBi Alumni, submit your profiles now!) Pascual's bright…

Frank Hilario, The Editor Who Would Be Fired

MANILA: You could also title this "Fire & Nice." They had Fire, I wanted Nice. Another title, "C is for Control." I had Control, they wanted Control.This is all about my unforgettable journey with a journal in the last decade. They don't make journals like I used to anymore!This is all about the Philippine Journal of Crop Science (PJCS); you're looking at the cover of one of the PJCS issues that I designed (in fact, I designed all the 22 covers while I was Editor in Chief, 2001-2008). On the cover of this one, August 2005 issue, the PC clip art is the illustration of my editorial, "The Challenge Of Creativity In Science & The Quest For Quality." I didn't say it directly, but I didn't find creativity in crop science at that time, and I didn't sense a quest for quality either. I was being paid per issue off the press; I accepted that. "We can pay you only a little," CSSP President Conrad H Balatero had told me in the j…